Commissioner seeks views as Government passes police funding onto local taxpayers4 January, 2018
Following the Government’s announcement that there will be no extra money from the Home Office to tackle crime in Lancashire, the county’s Police and Crime Commissioner Clive Grunshaw is asking residents how much they would be happy to invest in policing.
Since 2010, Lancashire Constabulary have had to make savings of over £72 million with an estimated £16m in further savings to find by 2020. But proposals set out by the Government mean that any extra funding to invest in policing must come from council tax payers.
Clive Grunshaw said, “Since 2015 the Government have assumed that Police and Crime Commissioners like myself must put up the council tax precept to minimise the impact of their cuts to funding. In their announcement before Christmas, they highlighted the need to invest in policing after years of cuts to local budgets, but are passing the buck on to local residents.”
In the consultation the public will be asked if they want to keep the increase to 6p per week, which would help safeguard some police jobs, or increasing it by around 23p per week or a 40p per week increase, which would allow additional resources to be invested in frontline policing.
Mr Grunshaw explained, “Every year one of my responsibilities is to set the council tax precept. This is the amount of money that householders pay towards policing in the county. With rising demands, increasing costs through inflation and growing online threats we cannot accept a further reduction in our police budget.
“Across the county residents tell me that they want to see better investment in policing. It might seem like a small amount but an extra 23p per week from the average household would raise over £5m for policing in Lancashire. This would protect officer and staff roles that would otherwise be lost and allow us to invest in a better policing service, fit for the future.”
Residents can have their say on the proposals by completing an online survey and the Commissioner’s office will be conducting a telephone survey with a sample of residents from every part of Lancashire in the coming weeks.
Anyone who wants to receive a paper copy of the survey can telephone 01772 533 587 and one will be posted out.
The survey is available online and in addition one hundred residents in all 14 of Lancashire’s boroughs will be contacted via telephone by an independent market research company to complete the questionnaire to ensure the response represents a wide-range of views.
The online survey runs until 18th January 2018